Kielder Water

Kielder Water in Northumberland is the largest man made reservoir in Europe and at first glance is a rather daunting choice for fly fishing in Northumberland.

Fly Fishing at Kielder
Fly Fishing at Kielder

With over 2,700 acres of water one could assume that locating the wild brown trout and stocked rainbow trout in this awesome fishery is a challenge. This is not the case.

Hiring one of the excellent motor boats is a must if you are to quickly move between the renowned hot spots of Matthews Lynn, Plashetts Bay, Plashetts Incline or Belling Inlet and get close to the massive 27 miles of shoreline. The motorboats at Kielder Water are very well equipped and Wheelie boats are available for disabled anglers. An anchor is useless here, but selected areas – like Plashetts Incline – have handy mooring slots to secure your boat and prevent drifting.

Kielder Water Fishing
Kielder Water Fishing

A Kate Mclaren generally does well at Kielder Water, and is particularly effective if ‘ginked up’ when the fish are rising or if you are stalking the brown trout. Dawsons Olive, Orange Fritz and Cat Whisker are also very useful patterns and should be in the fly box of anyone fly fishing in Northumberland. A worm is the preferred method for many anglers, just as is the case at most of the Northumbria Water fisheries.

Kielder Water is now worth a visit following extensive stocking in early 2008. Prior to this it was best avoided so hopefully Northumbria Water will keep up this proactive approach. On a good day this is the most scenic fishery in the UK due to the fact that Kielder Forest is the largest man made forest in Europe. The beautiful site that greets you when drifting in to Mathews Linn on a sunny day is akin to Scandinavia or British Columbia. In bad weather  fly fishing at Kielder Water is more like a scene from ‘The Fog’ or ‘Deadliest Catch’!

Kielder Water and Forest Park is situated at the source of the river North Tyne – England’s greatest Salmon River- some 12 miles to the north west of Bellingham and 29 miles north of Hexham. There are great facilities at Leaplish including log cabins if you really want to tackle the famous Kielder Midge. Beware, the nearest petrol station is 12 miles away. Fly fishing at Kielder Water is available from March to November each year. With a birds of Prey Centre, Kielder Castle , Mountain Biking, Walking, Sailing and even a swimming pool Kielder Water is a great location for a short break if you can find availability at a local Northumberland hotel.

For more information about Kielder Water or fly fishing in Northumberland call 01434 250294.

Center of map
Kielder Water, Northumberland


Kielder Water



NE48 1BX

Telephone:  01434 250294

2 thoughts on “Kielder Water”


    The first Sunderland Angling Show, which is being sponsored by Sunderland City Council, is planned for Friday, Saturday and Sunday 15th, 16th and 17th April, 2011. The show will be open to the public and will feature Game, Coarse, Carp and Sea Angling. Also on display will be boats and kayaks.

    As we have a meeting with Sunderland City Council on 7th December, I would very much appreciate if you could let us know if this will be of interest to your Company.

    Prices to exhibitors have been kept to a minimum as, although a good attendance is expected from the North East, Midlands and Scotland, the numbers of visitors to the show are an unknown quantity – this being the first show of it’s kind in the North East of England.

    The venue for the show is the Seaburn Centre, which is situated on the sea front at Seaburn and permission has been granted by the Sunderland City Council for casting demonstrations to be held on the beach just across the road. An area of the beach will be closed off for this purpose.

    There are hundreds of free car park spaces and the area is well serviced by public transport. There are also numerous cafes and restaurants close to the Centre, as well as several hotels and B & B’s.

    There is very good access for companies wishing to bring boats into the Centre, the entrance from the rear of the building being 13 ft x 13 ft.

    Prices for exhibition spaces are for the three days (not per day). For spaces around the perimeter of the Centre, which are 10 ft deep x 12 ft wide the cost is £180. Areas 12 ft deep x 12 ft wide and also 10 ft deep x 14 ft wide will be £200. There are also a limited number of spaces 30 ft x 30 ft in the centre of the hall, which will be £400 for the three days. Prices include electricity and also tables and chairs.

    Exhibitors will be able to set up on Thursday 14th and take down on Monday 18th.

    The venue is about one mile from the Sunderland Marina and companies wishing to put boats into the marina will be able to make their own arrangements. About the same distance away is Roker beach, which is inside the harbour and Companies wishing to demonstrate kayaks will be able to do so there.

    I hope that this is of interest to your Company and look forward to hearing from you.

    Sam Harris
    Angling Journalist and Broadcaster
    BBC Radio Newcastle
    Newcastle Evening Chronicle

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